What is it about?

Anomalous perceptual experiences refer to a broad range of distortions or disturbances that can occur in any of our senses. These experiences are typically associated with disorders like schizophrenia, dementia or Parkinson’s disease. More recently, they have been recognised as occurring in people who have no disorders at all, though may cause considerable distress. Importantly, no prior research has examined these experiences in healthy older adults living in the community (with no diagnosed illness), and we do not know whether anomalous perceptions are similar in both older and younger adults. Overall, the current study showed that the Cardiff Anomalous Perceptions Scale (CAPS) is a questionnaire that can be useful for measuring anomalous perceptual experiences in both older and younger people living in the community.

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Why is it important?

While many older adults will experience good mental and physical health as they age, the growing number of older adults worldwide means that we are also likely to see an increase in such difficulties. Importantly, we believe that anomalous perceptual experiences may offer a valuable window into the future development of mental and/or physical disorders (particularly when accompanied with high levels of distress), and so it is vital that we continue to try and better understand these phenomena in older adults.

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This page is a summary of: Factor structure and age invariance of the Cardiff Anomalous Perceptions Scale (CAPS) in healthy older and younger adults., Psychological Assessment, December 2020, American Psychological Association (APA), DOI: 10.1037/pas0000947.
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